Things are going decidedly poorly for the Italian national team right now. Coming on the heels of an international break that saw them draw a Euro 2016 qualifier against Croatia and lose a friendly to Portugal, they've fallen to 17th in FIFA's newly-updated national team rankings -- the lowest they have ever been since the rankings debuted in 1993.
Italy have spent time in the top spot in FIFA's charts several times over the last 25 years and until more recent years, they rarely ever fell out of the top ten. They'd never slipped lower than 16th though, with that poor ranking coming in 2010 after that miserable World Cup experience.
So now that Italy have "beaten" that unfortunate mark, it's safe to say that things aren't exactly going to plan in the Antonio Conte era of the national team. The team hasn't won since a friendly against Albania in November, and their European Championship qualifying efforts look to be in potential danger of going off the rails, having dropped points in three straight matches and with two tricky matches coming up in their next four.
Between those struggles, this new low ranking, and Conte's seemingly-endless grumbling about his lack of satisfaction as Italy's manager, you have to wonder how long he's going to be allowed to continue in the role. From a club-focused perspective, if -- and when -- Conte is no longer Italy's manager, you have to wonder what Aurelio De Laurentiis will do. He and Conte are friends, ADL is very ambitious, and his current manager is on an inexpensive one year deal. Decisions, decisions...